Sixty-eight (68) administrators and representatives of TESDA Technology Institutions (TTIs) coming from all over the country attended the Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (APACC) and TESDA Consultative Dialogue/Workshop on March 3 and 4, 2016 at TESDA Women's Center, Taguig City as they get ready for another cycle of quality improvement exercises through APACC accreditation.
With the theme, Gearing up for Higher Level APACC Accreditation, the dialogue/workshop aimed to inspire TTIs with expired APACC accreditation to apply for reaccreditation and get the most coveted Gold award, as well as encourage other TTIs to subscribe and aim for the same. It was organized through the collaborative efforts of TESDA and APACC, led by the TESDA Certification Office Assistant Director and concurrent APACC National Coordinator for Accreditation in the Philippines, Mr. Elpidio D. Mamaril, Jr., and Acting APACC President Prof. Dr. G. Kulanthaivel.
The opening program was graced by a staunch supporter of APACC, TESDA Deputy Director for TESD Operations, Atty. Teodoro C. Pascua, who delivered a message about the importance of getting an accreditation from organizations like APACC in order to improve the quality of TVET and produce a globally-competitive workforce. Together with him on-stage were Acting APACC President Prof. Dr. G. Kulanthaivel, APACC-Certified Accreditor and CPSC Faculty Dr. Romulita Alto, and APACC National Coordinator for Accreditation in Malaysia, Pn. Noor Aidi Binti Nadzri. Said APACC officials handed over the APACC Certificate of Re-accreditation (Silver Award) to TESDA Women's Center represented by its Chief, Ms. Maria Clara B. Ignacio and Supervising TESD Specialist, Ms. Mylene H. Somera during the opening day.
The program continued with Dr. G. Kulanthaivel, presenting an overview of APACC accreditation. He started by sharing the trend in global labor mobility, which is one of the reasons behind the establishment of APACC. The Commission was formed to standardize quality TVET in the region enabling easier access to a multi-cultural learning environment leading to borderless labor mobility. He proceeded with the seven criteria of APACC, which include Governance and Management, Teaching and Learning, Faculty and Staff, Research and Development, Extension, Consultancy and Linkages, Resources, and Support to Students. Later on, he shared the list of all 42 APACC accredited institutions and their corresponding awards. More than half of which were represented during the dialogue.
The morning session had Dr. Alto as the second speaker. Her presentation, Creating a Culture of Quality and Excellence in TVET through Accreditation, centered on change and how to deal with it; quality management; and gaps analysis and how it can be used to formulate a system development plan. The System Development Plan done in the form of an Action Plan was intended to assist TTIs in identifying corrective actions and solutions to close the gap between the actual situation and desired situation.
Before wrapping up the morning session, Pn. Noor Aidi shared Malaysia's Experience in APACC Accreditation. Her presentation was divided into 6 parts: (1) Education and Training System in Malaysia; (2) TVET in Malaysia – Issues and Challenges; (3) Compliance to Quality Assurance System in Malaysia; (4) Towards APACC Accreditation – MOHE Polytechnics' Journey; (5) Post Accreditation; and (6) Lessons Learned. She concluded by enumerating the following factors that got all 7 Malaysian polytechnics the Gold Award: Leadership, Building of Capacity, Teamwork, Knowing Strength and Weaknesses, Enculturation of Quality, Innovation and Collaboration.
The afternoon session resumed with Ms. Ignacio, sharing the Quality Journey of TESDA Women's Center (TWC). She talked about how at the beginning, TWC was recommended to pilot test the APACC instrument in 2008, then the pride they felt when it became the first institution to get a Silver Award until the time they were re-accredited twice. She stressed that TTI Administrators should be responsible enough to lead and enable their faculty and staff to strive for quality improvement and aim getting, if not maintain, a higher level of APACC accreditation.
As scheduled, an Open Forum was held after four sharing sessions. At this juncture, participants were able to ask follow up questions regarding benefits of APACC and the journey of Malaysian polytechnics and TESDA Women's Center. APACC, through Dr. GK, was also able to gather information about some of TTIs' reasons for not applying for reaccreditation.
The following session featured the preparation of Action Plans by TTIs per region. Mr. Mamaril explained the mechanics and guided the participants on how to go about their Action Plans. Participants coming from TTIs that have not undergone APACC accreditation were given the Accreditation Manual.
Presentation of Action Plans was held on the second day with Dr. Perla V. Lucas of Southern Isabela College of Arts and Trades (SICAT) leading the pack. Mr. Artemio Pulido of TESDA Regional Training Center – La Union, Ms. Arlene D. Nacario of Jacobo Z. Gonzales Memorial School of Arts and Trades (JZGMSAT), and Mr. Hilario S. Abecia of Camiguin School of Arts and Trades (CSAT) each had their chance to present their respective institutions’ action plans and received comments and suggestions from the Resource Speakers.
During the closing program, each participant was given a Certificate of Attendance. Dr. G. Kulanthaivel extended his appreciation to all the participants and the team from TESDA Certification Office as well as the APACC Secretariat. He aspired that more TTIs would be encouraged to apply for APACC accreditation and reaccreditation, and earn the elusive Gold award. He concluded by citing John Ruskin, saying that, "Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of intelligent effort."